‘Captain America 4’ first look sends Anthony Mackie into ‘Brave New World’

‘Captain America 4’ first look sends Anthony Mackie into ‘Brave New World’

Anthony Mackie has a friendly bone to pick with Tom Holland. In a viral moment captured at a fan convention in 2021, the Spider-Man actor joked that his fellow MCU star doesn’t have his own Falcon movie. Well, that’s about to change with Captain America: Brave New World, the new Marvel film headlining Mackie’s Sam Wilson as the next star-spangled hero.

Might Mackie feel the need to gloat? “No. He did that on a very public stage, so I’m going to hold that till the premiere,” the actor playfully tells Entertainment Weekly in an interview at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. “I’m going to make sure that Marvel makes him come to the premiere, and then I’m going to sit him next to me, and I’m going to watch him watch the movie.”

He’s got some time before that happens, but until then, EW can exclusively reveal the first official photos of Captain America: Brave New World, set to hit theaters on Feb. 14, 2025.

Mackie headlined the Disney+ series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier as Sam Wilson (a.k.a. Falcon) opposite Sebastian Stan‘s Bucky Barnes. The events of that series began Sam’s journey towards picking up Steve Rogers’ vibranium shield and assuming the mantle of the next Captain America. Now, Sam is back to lead his own movie, directed by Julius Onah (The Cloverfield Paradox).

Not only that, he’s here to assemble a new team of Avengers.

Anthony Mackie’s Sam Wilson returns in ‘Captain America: Brave New World’.

Marvel Studios

Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige hit the stage at the Colosseum in Caesar’s Palace during CinemaCon on Thursday, where he welcomed Mackie himself and screened the first footage from the movie for the room.

In it, Harrison Ford makes his Marvel debut as Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross, a role originated by the late William Hurt starting in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk and continuing all the way through to 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, where the character served as Secretary of State. Ross is now the newly elected President of the United States, though he’s not butting heads so much with the new Cap.

Revealed in the CinemaCon sneak peek, Ross welcomes Sam to the White House, thanking him for his past heroic actions. Though he admits he isn’t too fond of superheroes, he says even he can recognize Sam’s goodwill and tasks the military veteran with reforming Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. But, as they soon realize, there’s a leak in Ross’ inner circle.

A strange sound — an old timely song — interrupts Ross’ presentation at a White House event, triggering sleeper super-soldiers in the room to attack the President, including Carl Lumbly‘s Isaiah Bradley, returning from The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

“It made more sense for it to be more of a grounded espionage action movie as opposed to aliens and airplanes coming through portals and s—,” Mackie tells EW. “Even though I’ve been in so many of them and have seen it all now, the opportunity for Sam to really establish himself as a true action star and Avenger comes with this movie.”

Harrison Ford and Anthony Mackie in ‘Captain America: Brave New World’.

Eli Adé/Marvel Studios

Brave New World, Mackie adds, feels “10 times bigger” than The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. “One of the biggest conversations we had from the beginning was for this not to be Falcon and the Winter SoldierPart 2, for this to be its own movie with its own story, with its own characters,” he continues. Though, Mackie admits it’s still somewhat of a two-hander.

Instead of palling around with Stan’s Bucky, Sam is in the thick of it with Danny Ramirez as Joaquin Torres, the character’s tech-savvy “friend from work” and another iteration of Falcon from the comics. “They’re evenly yoked,” Mackie explains. “They’re both military guys. I was his commanding officer. We have more of a friendship as opposed to the way I admired Steve or the way I didn’t like Bucky.”

That same background is why Ford’s Ross holds Sam in higher esteem than Steve. At the same time, Mackie notes, “There is that idea of keeping your guard up and watching your back when it comes to each other.”

Ross isn’t the only throwback to The Incredible Hulk. Not counting Shira Haas as Ruth, a member of the U.S. Government, Liv Tyler is back playing Ross’ daughter, Betty, while Tim Blake Nelson reprises Samuel Sterns, a.k.a. the Leader, who was last seen being taken into S.H.I.E.L.D. custody after Banner’s blood caused him to mutate in that 2008 movie. Mackie doesn’t believe Marvel fans need to rewatch The Incredible Hulk to prepare for Brave New World.

“This movie is a clear reset. It really reestablishes the idea of what this universe is and what this universe is going to be,” Mackie says. “I think with these movies, you’re getting a clear, new branding of what Marvel is headed towards the same way they did with Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”

The title says it all: Brave New World, a seeming reference to the classic Aldous Huxley novel. “The title implies that there’s a new, bigger enemy now; there’s a new frontier that we have to conquer,” Mackie notes. “From Captain America: The First Avenger to Endgame, the enemy was always good versus bad. Now that we’ve conquered that, where do we go from here? When the bad guys reappear, in what form are they reappearing? It is a new storyline with new characters, with new beliefs, and it creates a new idea of this new world that we’re going into.”

And he’ll be sure Holland has a front-row seat to it all.

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